I Just Can't Wait To Be King

Album: The Lion King Soundtrack (1994)
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Songfacts®:

  • In Disney's hit animated classic The Lion King, Simba is a young lion prince who is eager to take his place as King of the Jungle and boss everyone around. As he and his best friend, Nala, set out on a secret journey to the elephant graveyard – a trap set by Simba's power-hungry Uncle Scar - Simba bursts into song, proclaiming, "I just can't wait to be king!"

    Famed lyricist Tim Rice wrote the lyrics to Elton John's music. "Basically, I was just thinking of children playing games," Rice told Vulture. "Whatever they say has to be plausible. We knew the song was sung by a lion cub, so it had to be innocent, boppy, and poppy. It's a lighthearted thing for kids to sing."
  • In the movie, Jason Weaver, who provides the singing voice for Jonathan Taylor Thomas' Simba, performs this with help from Nala (Laura Williams) and his trusty hornbill guide Zazu (Rowan Atkinson). Elton John also recorded his rendition for the soundtrack.
  • In the Broadway musical adaptation, this was originally performed by Scott Irby-Ranniar (young Simba), Kajuana Shuford (young Nala), and Geoff Hoyle (Zazu).
  • An updated version was included in the 2019 remake, performed by JD McCrary as young Simba, Shahadi Wright Joseph as young Nala, and John Oliver as Zazu.
  • Brian Wilson covered this on his 2011 album, In The Key Of Disney.
  • The New York Times Film Reviews 1993-1994 noted the film version sounded "as if Michael Jackson were singing 'Under the Sea.'" Jason Weaver actually played a young Michael Jackson in the 1992 biopic The Jacksons: An American Dream.

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